June 27 is National HIV Testing Day

From the indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com article ‘Kathleen Sebelius Releases Statement for National HIV Testing Day 2013’:

Do you know your HIV status? On June 27, the nation will observe the 19th annual National HIV Testing Day. This year’s theme is “Take the Test. Take Control.”

HIV testing is so important because it gives you the information you need to make good decisions about your health. If you test negative, you can take steps to stay that way (which may include periodic testing if you engage in high-risk behaviors). If you have HIV, there are medications that will help you stay healthy and live longer. These medications—known as antiretroviral therapy (ART)—also make it significantly less likely that you might pass the virus to someone else.

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) has already expanded access to free HIV screening for many people. For those living with HIV/AIDS, the healthcare law will help to ensure they get the care and treatment they need. That is good news, and the ACA has more in store. On January 1, 2014, many of the ACA’s most important provisions will begin increasing access to healthcare for millions of Americans, including those living with HIV/AIDS. To prepare, as of October 1, 2013, people can begin enrolling in ACA-mandated Health Insurance Marketplaces to find affordable health insurance.

National HIV Testing Day posterMs. Sebelius is right. It is important to get tested and know your status; not just once, but periodically as well. High risk or low risk behavior doesn’t matter. Risk is risk.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has a searchable site for events taking place on June 27. If you don’t see an event near you, ask your doctor for an HIV test. If you think your doctor will look at you cockeyed for getting tested, find another doctor, clinic or medical space where you feel you can get tested comfortably; even if the only thing you do with that clinic/doctor is get tested. But get tested.

Read the full article

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